In a season of outages, when internet-based services seem to be having a tough time staying online, the last thing anyone wants to talk about is an upcoming cloud-based operating system. But that is exactly what we are about to do. MPC readers, let us ignore the bone-chilling horrors of the past week that are otherwise likely to linger with many of you for a long time, so that we can concentrate on reports of an upcoming Chrome OS netbook from Samsung called “Alex.” The existence of this netbook came to light through a Chromium bug report. Hit the jump for specs.
It's been well over a month since Google finished distributing the entire quota of 60,000 Cr-48 Chrome notebooks reserved for Chrome OS pilot program participants, and the mid-2011 launch of retail devices promised by the company doesn't seem too far off now - just as long as the river of time keeps flowing at its familiar rate. But wait, what if there is yet another delay like the one that pushed retail Chrome OS devices to mid-2011 from late 2010? Pretty unlikely, according to our friends over at Neowin.
Google previously said that Acer and Samsung will launch Chrome OS-based notebooks in the first half of 2011, but don't hold your breath waiting for this happen. Instead, it looks as though first-tier notebook makers, which also include Asus and Sony, are all pegging the second half of 2011 to begin mass shipments of Chrome OS notebooks,
We've always held that netbooks and tablets can coexist, though if netbooks are to stay relevant, PC makers may have to experiment with lower priced models. Word on the Web is that Asus is planning exactly that and will launch a new non-Windows netbook in June for around $200 to $250. At that price, it would be hard to ignore, especially with today's worthwhile tablets running $500 and up.
The iPad-spawned media tablet category might be cannibalizing netbook sales, but Taiwan’s Asus, which launched the netbook category in 2007 with the Eee PC 701 and is one of the companies worst affected by this sales cannibalization, isn’t ready to abandon the category just yet. If a new Digitimes report is to be believed, Asustek will soon launch a sub-$250 netbook in cooperation with Intel in a bid to resurrect what has to be its favorite category of PCs. Hit the jump to know more.
Google’s new Chrome OS doesn’t have much going for it if you’re a power user, but an innovative new YouTube ad campaign might just make you think twice about the benefits of cloud computing.
The video itself is only about 5 minutes long, but the notebook death toll hits a whopping 25 machines which all face horrendous slow motion demises. I could try and describe each one to you, but let’s just summarize by saying Google wants to remind you that Laptop hell is a real place, and at the moment it’s filled with CR-48’s.
I somehow doubt anyone has really lost a laptop this way, but if you have the stomach for it, you can find the full clip after the jump.
In this week's suprisingly on-time episode of the Maximum PC No BS Podcast, Gordon, Nathan, Alex and Andy have hands-on time with Google's Cr-48 netbook (AKA the Chrome OS developer netbook), take a look at Falcon Northwest's latest over-the-top gaming rig, and talk about Intel's new mobile chip. In the rant, Gordon explains what's wrong with USB ports, and muses about the wisdom of raising a nerdling.
Do you have a tech question? A comment? A tale of technological triumph? Just need to get something off your chest? A secret to share? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our 24-hour No BS Podcast hotline at 877.404.1337 x1337--operators are not standing by.
Google recently unveiled its pilot netbook for the Chrome OS, the Cr-48 (check out our hands-on preview here), which basically lives entirely on the cloud. In the future, Google hopes you will, too.
"I think it depends on the user and the user's behavior," Google product management director, Caesar Sengupta, said in an interview with SearchEngineLand. He was asked if he sees cloud-based machines taking the place of Windows- and Mac-based computers.
"In the long term and the fullness of time, absolutely. I think we will have failed if this doesn't become your default way of computing," Sengupta said.
That's a bold goal, one that's probably a bit unrealistic given how popular current non cloud-based OSes are. Nevertheless, Sengupta points out that "hundreds of millions of users" already live on the web, and "for many of these users, this will replace their machines immediately, especially as Web apps get better."
So what do you think, is cloud computing the end game for computing nirvana?
Google yesterday lifted the curtain from its CR-48 Chrome OS netbook (if you want to get your mitts on one, you'll have to apply for the Pilot Program and make a compelling argument of why you're a solid candidate), and may have killed the Caps Lock key in the process.
To the shock and horror of overactive forum posters and hyper Facebook users everywhere, Google got the bright idea to replace the Caps Lock key with a search key, and you know what? WE'RE PLEASED AS PUNCH THEY DID!
While said in jest, the employee's comments ring true, and we wouldn't be heartbroken if all notebook vendors followed suit. If they did, IT WOULD TAKE A TON MORE WORK TO TYPE LIKE THIS, ensuring that if someone feels the need to shout, it will be worth shouting about.
That's not to say there aren't some legitimate uses for the Caps Lock key, and if you're one of the few who rely on it, don't fret. Google says you can easily convert the search key back to a Caps Lock key in the settings menu (Wrench > Settings > System).
Instead, the company has restricted the Intel Atom-based device to Google employees and those accepted into the Chrome OS Pilot Program, implying that the Cr-48 is just a pilot device. According to the internet titan, Chrome OS is still not a finished product and that user feedback is needed to lend finishing touches to the software.
“Some of the features of Chrome OS require new hardware, but we didn’t want to sell pre-beta computers. Instead we’re launching a pilot program where we will give test notebooks to qualified users, developers, schools and businesses. We're starting with the U.S. and will expand to other countries once we get the necessary certifications,” the Google Chrome team said in a blog post.
The Cr-48 features a 12.1-inch screen, integrated 3G from Verizon, Wi-Fi, and a full-sized keyboard and touch pad. The pilot program will also include 100MB of free data per day for two years, with the option of additional data through paid plans starting at $9.99. The pilot program is currently only restricted to applicants from the United States, but will gradually be expanded to other countries.
According to Taiwanese site Digitimes, the Cr-48 is being manufactured by Inventec, which has already shipped 60,000 units of the device to Google. The first mass market Chrome OS devices will be available in the first half of next year.